Monthly Archives: August 2007

This was seriously FUN!

Published / by Mary / 27 Comments on This was seriously FUN!

I finished up the doll quilt this afternoon and can’t wait to make another one. Here are 3 photo’s and I’m even including a close-up of the hand quilting. Except for the wonky center, it’s not too bad considering I haven’t hand quilted anything in several years AND I’ve never hand quilted without a hoop.

Click on the images to see a larger view. This also counts as a UFO finish (#14 this year) since these blocks were made a very long time ago!

Ready for binding

Published / by Mary / 25 Comments on Ready for binding

I love the texture that Baptist Fans give a quilt (thanks to the templates from Circle Lord , they’re easy to machine quilt). I know it looks like the quilting has overpowered the piecing on this HeartStrings RWB Sampler for Quilts of Valor but I couldn’t resist taking a photo of the quilt tossed across the longarm. The afternoon sun in my Studio is perfect for seeing the texture quilting brings to a top.

Just in case you didn’t believe me, here are two photos of the quilt just after trimming and you can still see the piecing and pattern of the top. Click on the photos to see larger views. Once I get this bound – I’ll have 3 quilts to send back to Sue Frank for Quilts of Valor and she’s got another top to send me for quilting.


Published / by Mary / 9 Comments on Ugh…

This was a day I shouldn’t have been quilting. Things were going so well and I was getting quilt after quilt done without problems until today. I had tension issues and will have to frog a partial row tomorrow and re-quilt it. I was so disgusted at one point that I walked away and went downtown for a coffee and to pick up some fresh bread for dinner.

I did come back and finish the rest of the Baptist Fan quilting so once I frog and re-quilt that partial row – I’ll be done.

On another subject – Julie asked me if I knew the origin of the Chinese Coins quilt. I’m not sure if she meant the name of the pattern or the pattern itself but the only reference I was able to find was in the book Amish Crib Quilts from the Midwest which suggested that it was a Bars Quilt variation.

I looked in another book on Amish quilts, An Amish Adventure by Roberta Horton and was surprise to find that she shows a Chinese Coins quilt as a Bars Quilt variation saying “you can break up the odd-number bars into squares of different colors, a pattern know as Chinese Coins.” And what I consider a Chinese Coins quilt, she calls a Roman Coins (another Bars Quilt variation).

Does anyone else have any information on the origin of this pattern/quilt name?

There’s a reason I make To Do Lists

Published / by Mary / 10 Comments on There’s a reason I make To Do Lists

Of course, there’s the obvious pleasure I get from checking everything off the list but I’m convinced I’d never finish half the things I start if it wasn’t for my lists. By putting things on the list that I would normally procrastinate doing they actually get done.

If I hadn’t set my mini goals yesterday, I’d have gotten up and gone straight to work on the doll quilt. It’s the *new* exciting project (at least until the next one comes along).

You’ll notice that sewing a binding and loading a quilt on the longarm were the other two *tasks* I set for myself yesterday – probably my two least favorite things to do so I made myself finish both of them before allowing myself to work on the doll quilt. By the way, I’m getting a LOT more comfortable with hand quilting without a hoop and my stitches are looking better too.

Final result? I got it all done including starting the Baptist Fans quilting and making more string blocks for the Half Square Hearts.

Tomorrow’s mini list?
1. Finish quilting the HeartStrings Sampler for QOV
2. Work on piecing the Half Square Hearts
3. More hand quilting on the doll quilt.

Today’s mini To Do List

Published / by Mary / 2 Comments on Today’s mini To Do List

My sleep clock is completely off! I’ve been awake all night the last couple weeks and am sleeping all morning. By the time I get up, showered, walk the dog, and check email, half the day is already gone.

Since I finished up everything on my list last week – I just have a mini list for today.
1. Load the HeartStrings RWB sampler quilt – I’m going to quilt Baptist Fans
2. Get the binding on one of the 2 HeartStrings quilts quilted last week and not yet bound
3. Do some hand quilting on the doll quilt.

By the way, Deb asked when I was going to post of photo of the hand quilting on the doll quilt – it’s so bad I’m going to wait until I’m finished and the quilt is washed!

I’m a pack-rat

Published / by Mary / 3 Comments on I’m a pack-rat

Today, that’s a good thing. I haven’t hand quilted in years or pin basted a quilt since buying my longarm (5 years ago) so I wasn’t sure if I would have all the supplies I needed to get started on hand quilting my doll quilt.

I found everything needed and pin basted the quilt this morning. I took a look at Tonya’s instructions for hand quilting without a hoop but I have to say I’m finding it awkward. I’m sure I felt the same when when I first tried quilting in a hoop so I’ll keep at it.

My stitches look ridiculous but I’m having fun. They’ll improve over time if not with this quilt then with one of the next ones. Since doll quilts have traditionally been made by children learning to quilt, mine will look authentic!

I had a surprise in the mail yesterday. Actually, for a few minutes I had the horrible feeling I’d been doing too much online shopping because I couldn’t imagine what I’d ordered that came in a large flat envelope type package. It was my swatch card from Virginia Longarm (that’s the small card on top of the apron) along with samples that I wasn’t expecting.

Deb and I have plans to order a couple different colors and split them but when I went to place the order tonight, the shipping charge seemed very high. I held off on the order and have sent an email asking if it’s accurate. I’m crossing my fingers that it’s not.

Another gorgeous day

Published / by Mary / 9 Comments on Another gorgeous day

We had another beautiful day so we spent all afternoon outside.

We continue to walk around downtown and talk about where we’d like to live if we decide to stay here and buy a place. We like the area we are living now and one on the other side of downtown by the river. Today we walked by some townhouses by the river that we looked at when we first moved. A lot will depend on Keith’s job and we really do need to sell our Condo in GA which is still for sale so we won’t be moving in the near future but it’s nice to look.

I pieced together the doll quilt tonight after Keith went to bed. I’m not crazy about the top and bottom rows of blocks – intended to take the quilt from square to rectangular but I’m going to live with it. I think once it’s bound and those center white edges are framed I’ll be happier.

I received my book from Amazon and have paged through it. One of the things I found very interesting was the discussion on how obsessed we are with symmetry in quilts today. That’s me to a T so I guess I’ll have to work on being more spontaneous and asymmetric.

Now I have to see if I can find my safety pins, quilting betweens and some quilting thread and get this basted tomorrow.

Why am I crawling around on the floor at 2AM?

Published / by Mary / 15 Comments on Why am I crawling around on the floor at 2AM?

I’ve always admired the small quilts that Tonya makes and hand quilts and I’ve been watching the quilts being exchanged in the doll quilt swaps. I don’t have any desire to swap but I decided I could always make some quilts, buy some dolls, and donate them together.

Inspired to finally act by Lucy and a mini quilt she made recently, I ordered a few books from Amazon including the book she referred to on hand quilting – Quilting With Style: Principles for Great Pattern Design by Gwen Marston & Joe Cunningham.

So while I’m waiting for my books to arrive, I remembered an old UFO that’s not even on my working list because it will just never be finished and this is where the crawling around on the floor at 2AM comes in!

These drunkard’s path blocks are appliqued not pieced (needle-turn applique believe it or not!) all from Joann’s calico’s I bought the first year I was quilting. So I think this is going to become my first doll quilt and who knows it might be my last too since I certainly don’t need more projects, we’ll see how it goes.